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14 Tips for Starting and Sticking with a Workout Routine

Stop Failure Before it Starts

122 Comments



  • BANUELOS2148
    great article-I, however, do like to keep in mind that I was once healthy and in shape-it keeps me encouraged that I can be there again. I also think it's good for me to keep one pair of smaller sized pants because the impact of fitting into these smaller clothes in a great incentive. - 1/10/2010 6:37:44 PM
  • I want to get back to the weight I was in high school, but for me, that's not an unrealistic goal, since I wasn't extremely skinny then (I'm 5'4", and at the lowest, I think I was about 135 lb). I do want to lose all the weight I put on in college, but my goal is to look better than I did back then.

    As far as planning anything, it's the best I can do to just try to get a minimum of fifteen minutes of exercise in each day, and do more than that when I can. I guess I'm just not into the whole "planning" thing. Just doesn't work for me. - 12/30/2009 2:05:51 AM
  • MOMSHOME
    I'm so sorry...guess I'm getting older but WHY plan exercise? Isn't just turning off the TV & doing what should be done, gardening, walking, shoveling snow, cleaning, walking the dog, helping a neigbor enough? What's with all the planning??? Our parents & grand-parents didn't PLAN exercise & they were much slimmer & trimmer than our generation...and they even ate desserts, fully-home cooked meals, snacked whenever & still managed to maintain their weight. I've found..just get moving...to be the best advice. - 12/30/2009 12:45:41 AM
  • Great article! My favorites are 8-10 and 13:

    8. Sign up for a race. Itís a goal to strive for and adds a little meaning to your everyday workout.

    9. Run/walk in public. Be proud of your accomplishment. Take in all the sites and be an inspiration to others.

    10. Just show up. Go to the gym, class, or the park. Once youíre there, itís hard to say no. 98% of life is showing up.

    13. Wallow in your greatness. You can exercise to become a better exerciser, or you can exercise to become a better mother, a better father, doctor, teacher, or a better friend Ė or you can exercise to become BETTER. Be proud of that accomplishment.

    Very motivating!

    Elena - 12/29/2009 1:09:41 AM
  • ALMA888X
    i'm 23 and i would love to look like i was 3 years ago, so i'm not going to toss #1 out. and yes, to get there, i have tons of weight to lose. - 12/28/2009 10:39:11 PM
  • Great article. Just today at the gym I overheard a couple of women talking - one commented that she liked working out once she arrived at the gym and the other said that getting there was over half the battle so your item 0 was exactly right! - 12/28/2009 9:21:08 PM
  • You mean I can finally throw away those too tight jeans(the ones that still have the tags on them) that are so old that they are totally out of style....yeah! - 12/28/2009 8:53:25 PM
  • ANDERSON2B
    So timely. A huge obstacle is the pile of clothes that no longer fit and the fact that I am no longer the girl in the front row of the fitness class kicking cardio butt. Perhaps these things should motivate me, but they definitely do not. I actually went to Spin class this morning vowing not to overdo it, primarily because I know I won't go to gym again tomorrow if I can't move from today's workout. I accepted the fact that I was probably the least in shape in the class and went at a pace slower than everyone else. Very difficult for me, the overacheiver. - 12/28/2009 1:48:33 PM
  • Yay for Joyful Jo's courage to speak her truth! I see both sides to this. I, like JoJo, totally need to push myself a bit, as I have gone easy on myself for years! But I think there are lots of people who are all or nothing, and who get out there and push themselves to the extreme so that they don't want to exercise regularly -- because the last time they did it, it hurt so much. JoJo is so right, that we all have to find what works for us. - 12/28/2009 12:13:17 PM
  • I totally agree with joyful jo -- the "listen to your body" take it easy type of approach doesn't work for me either - it might have worked when I was a child/ before my body became completely off, but my body/ mind now has a completely messed up idea of what I should be eating, exercising, etc! - 12/28/2009 10:23:17 AM
  • I especially liked "Starting today, make new memories. " This simple statement can apply in so many ways besides exercise. - 12/28/2009 10:22:15 AM
  • Even though I get the gist of this article, I think this mentality is what has kept me fat. The whole, start slow, slow down if you need to, be good to yourself mantra FOR ME, has not produced results and caused frustration. When I began watching Biggest Loser, I realized I could work harder than I do. Obviously, I cannot work out for 6 hours a day, but I realized I could up the intensity and NOT let myself slow down and that I could be tougher on myself and all of a sudden, the scale started moving. So while I think these may be great tips for someone who is just beginning, FOR ME, they need to be left behind with the training wheels if I want to get some real results and achieve my goal. Otherwise, I give up and stay fat. Of course, I'm not saying NONE of these are good suggestions....just saying...for me.....I need to focus on working harder. Man I hope I don't get slammed for saying that. We're all different. - 12/28/2009 10:19:54 AM
  • Great article - will keep me motivated to carry on being fit in my fifties. Just one small point - don't forget some of us are now SLIMMER than we were in High School. I was a big kid and am now about 30lbs lighter than I was in High School!

    So, I am very glad to on Spark People and on the path to health, fitness and happiness - 12/28/2009 6:58:08 AM
  • Very sound and EASY! advice! thank you! - 12/26/2009 2:34:25 PM
  • SUSHAH
    Thought this article included a lot of good ideas - and it does provide an excellent source of motivational and inspirational tips. Well worth saving and referring to on a regular basis. - 10/27/2009 7:33:19 AM

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